Message for the Day ….” You must strive to diagnose your own character and discover the faults that are infesting it; do not try to analyse the character of others and seek to spot their defects.”

Life is a campaign against foes; a battle with obstacles, temptations, hardships, and hesitations. These foes are within and so, the battle has to be incessant and perpetual. Like the virus that thrives in the bloodstream, the vices of lust, greed, hate, malice, pride and envy sap the energy and faith of every being and reduce them to untimely fall. You must strive to diagnose your own character and discover the faults that are infesting it; do not try to analyse the character of others and seek to spot their defects. This self-examination is very necessary to bring to light the defects that might undermine one’s spiritual career. People buy clothes with deep colour, so that they may not reveal dust or dirt; they do not prefer white clothes, for they show plainly their soiled condition. But, do not try to hide your dirt in darkness; be ashamed of soiled natures and endeavour to cleanse them fast.

Source….. http://media.radiosai.org

Natarajan

The Sacred Crocodiles of Bazoule…..!!!

Bazoule, in Burkina Faso, is a sprawling lakeside village around 30 kilometers from the capital Ouagadougou, with a very unique tradition—for many generations residents of this village have been living in harmony with more than a hundred ferocious crocodiles that live in the village pond, the same pond where children swim and bath and the womenfolk fetch water from.

Bazoule’s crocodiles are a distant relative to the larger and more aggressive Nile crocodile. They are a species of their own—Crocodylus suchus—also known as the West African crocodile or desert crocodiles because they are mostly found in forested regions and open habitats. These crocodiles, or rather their ancestors, have adapted to the changing environment in northern Africa, from lush savannah and grasslands 10,000 years ago to the hot and arid Sahara that it is now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: www.globe-reporters.org

Unlike the Nile crocodile, that typically prefers large seasonal rivers, the West African crocodile generally prefers lagoons and wetlands in forested regions. Some of these wetlands, called a guelta, forms only during rains or when underground springs collect in a depression. When the water evaporates, the crocodiles pass the summer in a kind of torpor. They don’t eat and they keep movement down to a minimum.

West African crocodiles are also less aggressive than the Nile crocodile and usually does not attack humans. Like Bazoule, many communities throughout West Africa have lived in close proximity to West African crocodiles and instead of fearing them, these people revere them and protect them from harm. Bazoule’s people believe that the crocodiles came from the sky along with the rains, and if the crocodiles disappear the water will disappear too.

Sacred crocodiles are also found in the town of Sabou in central western Burkina Faso. Just over the border from Burkina Faso in Ghana, there is a town called Paga, that hosts their own collection of crocodiles that live side by side with humans. Both at Bazoule and at Paga, there are guides who will eagerly lure the crocodiles out of water with live chicken as bait, so that tourists can pat them and take pictures with them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: www.globe-reporters.org

Source….Kaushik in http://www.amusingplanet.com

Natarajan

Message for the Day…. ” There are two things that draw one’s mind: hitha(the beneficial) and priya (the pleasant). Prefer the beneficial to the pleasant, for the pleasant might lead you down the sliding path into the bottomless pit.”

There are two things that draw one’s mind: hitha(the beneficial) and priya (the pleasant). Prefer the beneficial to the pleasant, for the pleasant might lead you down the sliding path into the bottomless pit. Vibhishana spoke hitha to Ravana, but he lent his ear to the priya that his sycophantic ministers spoke. He sealed his fate by this preference of pleasant over beneficial. The true doctor is interested in curing you of all illness and so, he advises hitha to restore your health; the Guru is such a doctor. Obey him even when his prescription is unpalatable, for, you will be cured! People suffer from the fever of the senses and they try the quack remedies of recreations, pleasures, picnics, banquets, dances, etc., only to find that the fever does not subside. The fever can subside only when the hidden virus is rendered ineffective. That virus will die only when the rays of jnana (wisdom) fall upon it.

Source…. http://media.radiosai.org

Natarajan

Message for the Day…. ” The heart has to be offered in full. Devotion has to fill and overflow the heart, for you to rise into Divinity!”

Most people engage in bhajan singing, puja and dhyana (ritualistic worship and meditation) but these are mere physical exercises! Ask yourself sincerely – is your mind elevated as a result of these? Does your heart pour through during your worship? No! Hence you continue to remain at the human level and do not rise to the Divine. “Can a lake be filled when there is only a sprinkle of rain? Can thirst be relieved, with a few drops of water? Can the belly be full, if breathing is held tight? Can live cinders be secured by the burning of blades of grass?” asks a famous poet. Logs have to be burned if charcoal is needed. Only sheets of rain can fill a lake to the brim. A glass of cold water alone can cure a person of thirst, nothing less. The heart has to be offered in full. Devotion has to fill and overflow the heart, for you to rise into Divinity!

http://media.radiosai.org

Natarajan

Providence Canyon: The Man-made Natural Wonder….

Approximately 150 miles southwest of Atlanta, in the US state of Georgia, is a network of gorges and massive gullies lovingly called Georgia’s “Little Grand Canyon.” It is considered to be one of Georgia’s “Seven Natural Wonders”, except it isn’t at all natural. These impressive canyons were created not by the action of a river over millions of years but by rainwater runoff from farm fields in less than a century.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: John A. Kelley/USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Providence Canyon began forming in the early 1800s because of poor farming practices that prevailed across the nation and especially in the south. In those early days of agriculture, land was cheap, unlimited and seemingly expendable giving way to a combination of plantations, small farms, and eventually a sharecropper system that not only degraded the land but also kept farmers in debt and uneducated. Native forest cover were cleared so the land could be farmed, and no measures were taken to avoid soil erosion leading to massive loss of topsoil. Small gullies began to form and rapidly grew deeper and more extensive, until they were three to five feet deep by the 1850s. These small channels began to further concentrate runoff increasing the rate of erosion. Today, some of the gullies at Providence Canyon are 150 feet deep.

Despite its recent formation, Providence Canyon is a treasure trove for geologists and visitors alike. Erosion has exposed the geologic record of several million years within its walls, and minerals have stained the sediments, creating a wide range of colors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: Alexander Lerch/Flickr

Providence Canyon lies in a region that was formed by deposition of marine sediments between 59 and 74 million years ago. The soil in the top part of the canyon wall was deposited about 60-65 million years ago, just after the age of the dinosaurs. Its fairly coarse sand is a reddish color caused by the presence of iron oxide. Underneath this formation lies what is known as the Providence Sand, which makes up most of the canyon walls. It’s one hundred and nineteen feet thick and was deposited about 70 million years ago. The upper part of this layer is very fine sand mixed with a white clay. The middle layer is coarse and more colorful, with beds of yellow (limonite) and purple (manganese) deposits. The lowest and oldest layer is a black and yellow mica-rich clay. The bottom of the canyon floor was deposited about 70-74 million years ago, and is orange in color but is poorly exposed and overgrown by vegetation.

Providence Canyon continues to erode, however, the floor of the canyon is more resistant and growth of pine trees, buses and other vegetation has helped stabilize the soil.

Source…..Kaushik in http://www.amusingplanet.com

Natarajan